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Old 09-09-2007, 06:35 PM
 
9,558 posts, read 26,408,859 times
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Considering the typical weahter here in the Triangle, if you were looking at two identical homes at the same price but one had gas heat and the other had an electric heat pump, which would you choose and why?

Being from NJ, I always thought gas was the way to go. Friends of mine in NJ with electric heat would have much higher heating bills than folks with gas heat. Does this hold true for Raleigh area homes as well? I know some prefer the "feel" of gas heat, but I am also interested in cost comparison.

I have gas heat and I don't find the heating bills to be very high, but wonder if I would have been better off financially if I had a heat-pump. This is something I want to keep in mind for my next purchase.


Thanks!
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Old 09-09-2007, 06:53 PM
rfb
 
Location: Raleigh, NC
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I've always had gas heat and love it. But heat pumps work fine in this part of the country, and from talking with friends heat pumps seem to be slightly less expensive. If buying again, I would probably buy gas again as it just feels warmer when it is running. That is simply a personal preference, and either will work fine.
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Old 09-09-2007, 06:56 PM
 
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Gas all the way. Now, I haven't had a heat pump, but the main thing that I was told is that the heat is not "instant" like gas. Basically, if you don't keep your home at a consistant temp even when you aren't there, or have some kind of programmable thermo, it can take a good long while to get the temp you want. I hate being cold, and I am cold all the time anyway, so I need my heat now!
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Old 09-09-2007, 07:52 PM
 
Location: Cary, NC
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We have gas heat and like it very much. I haven't had a heat pump though. But having gas heat sure is nice in the winter when the power goes out and everyone else is freezing! Especially the gas water heater!
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Old 09-09-2007, 08:09 PM
 
Location: Raleigh, NC
11,791 posts, read 27,436,549 times
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I've had both.

Years ago, it seemed like the heat pump worked well since our temps were way below freezing. However, as the years went by and the winters got colder and colder, the heat pump seemed to have problems keeping up. Once that "auxillary light" comes on, you can just watch the money go!

We now have gas.

Seems like more people want gas.

However, if you dont have access to natural gas, you get heat pump or propane. Not sure which one of those is preferable, as I have clients that like both!

Vicki
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Old 09-09-2007, 09:25 PM
 
Location: Cary, NC
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I have a dual-fuel gas pack.
It has a heat pump that handles the bulk of heating and all the cooling.
It also has a gas furnace to back up the heat pump when temperatures a low enough that common heat strips would kick in.
I can set the temperature where the gas takes over, or it will automatically burn gas when the furnace is trying to raise the heat more than a couple of degrees.

I think it is the best of both worlds: Cheap cooling with cheap and fairly comfortable heat.
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Old 09-09-2007, 09:36 PM
 
Location: Oxxford Hunt, Cary NC
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Heat pumps are more economical, but gas heat is toastier. Just gotta pick which is more important. The gas pack is a nice option if you can get it.
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Old 09-09-2007, 09:57 PM
 
Location: Durham, NC
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We had natural gas in our last home, with PSNC. Even though the house was poorly insulated and we kept our house toasty, the gas bill was consistently low. I think gas is warmer than a heat pump. I would never have propane because I have known people go broke trying to heat their homes with it. EDIT to say "consistently low" means it was never over 90 bucks, in the coldest months.
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Old 09-10-2007, 06:44 AM
rfb
 
Location: Raleigh, NC
1,843 posts, read 5,006,683 times
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Quote:
Originally Posted by welovedurham View Post
I would never have propane because I have known people go broke trying to heat their homes with it.
As someone with propane, this does not match my experience. I moved from a house with natural gas (PSNC) to a home with propane. The home with propane is about as inexpensive to heat as my last home, although it is quite a bit larger. It does have good insulation throughout, which probably makes a big difference. But in my experience, the two (natural gas and propane) are comparable in cost.
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Old 09-10-2007, 07:38 AM
 
9,680 posts, read 23,481,401 times
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Gas has spiked crazily in the past and may well do so again.

Heat pumps work well here with mild winters. Our aux heat has only kicked in a few times.

Some folks like the higher temp from the vents with gas. We've never found the heat pump's output inadequate.

Gas can be a budget buster here.
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